1 - We purchased a bag of the Basic Prairie seed mix from Cardo JFNew and stored it in the refrigerator until we decided on the perfect day for seeding. (You can also collect seed if you have some good sites.)
2 - We headed out to the land surrounding the green barn and wetland. Look at the wintry landscape! Soon the garden will be in full bloom again....already our seed orders are rolling in. Yippee!
4 - and scattered it about. With the snow on the ground it was very easy to see where we had seeded and where we still needed to put seed.
5 - After we hand seeded the entire area (10 minutes maximum), Steve thought to run a garden rake over the area to mix the seed in with the snow a bit so the birds wouldn't eat it all. The new snow falling also helped to quickly cover it up.
6 - Finally, we wait. Yup, that's all there is too it. Winter seeding allows the various seeds to go through all their necessary dormancies and stratifications to ensure successful germination. Normal freezing and thawing will work the seed down into the soil with no more effort on our part. The ground underneath the snow is ready for the seed and we plan to monitor to make sure no invasives creep in and try to take over.
For such a small amount of effort, the process gave us a gargantuan amount of satisfaction. No more mowing, many flowers and grasses to appreciate and an incredible new home for wildlife. If you've not read this article, check it out. It's why we do what we do and discusses one of the most meaningful, impactful things we can all do at our own homes.
The snow is falling here again with another 3-5 inches forecast. We are grateful for a real winter this year!